Every morning supply chain professionals open up an inbox filled with industry updates, customer demands, and business opportunities. Although customer and business partnership emails may seem the most time-sensitive, tenured transportation and logistics professionals understand that the choices and changes of other companies and entities will impact their own work environment. This review will present seven of the latest developments of the past week.
Radio-Frequency Identification Coming To a UPS Near You
The United Parcel Service (UPS) plans to implement an RFID tagging system at 100 locations this year. According to Supply Chain Dive, this smart package system would eliminate 20 million manual daily scans by truck-loading UPS employees. During the company’s Q1 earnings call, CEO Carol Tomé commented that the company’s motivation to make this change stemmed from missortings’ impact on low customer experience and productivity ratings.
Shopify Gains Momentum on Network Expansion With Purchase of Deliverr
On May 5, 2022, Shopify announced the $2.1 billion purchase of e-commerce fulfillment and storage company, Deliverr. Supply Chain Dive reported that Deliverr ships over 100 million orders per month across the United States on behalf of thousands of merchants at the time of sale. This business acquisition will provide a start-to-finish logistics platform with heightened freight network optimization options. This big move by the self-operating e-commerce warehouse giant will offer its merchants a more straightforward fulfillment process and better access to fast shipping services.
FedEx, Stock, and E-Commerce, Oh My!
FedEx is coming for e-commerce. A recent Barron’s article discussed the insight of one analyst considering FedEx’s purchase of ShopRunner in 2020 as a backdoor into e-commerce. ShopRunner is an e-commerce platform indirectly competing with Amazon with its provision of two-day shipping and an easy checkout experience for top retail brands such as Kate Spade, American Eagle Outfitters, Under Armour, and Hudson’s Bay Company. In this business escapade, FedEx has opportunities to leverage ShopRunner’s merchant network to become a “universal shopping cart” for e-commerce, providing millions of subscribers with free expedited shipping.
Available Truck Transportation Jobs Vascillate Back Up After March Decline
In March 2022, the number of U.S. truck transportation jobs decreased for the first time since the beginning of the pandemic when even the gig economy had to contribute to overwhelming transportation needs. While the March decrease made some worry about a failing freight sector, the April job increase made up for it. Not only did they increase, but FreightWaves reported, “The sector added 13,000 jobs, rising to 1,564,100 jobs… [which] is the largest increase since a 15,800 job jump in April 2013.”
Diesel Prices Rise as Inventories Fall on The East Coast
While learning how to calculate fuel surcharges has become an expected job requirement, plummeting fuel inventories may hike current rates. At the Colonial Pipeline, the New York harbor price was down to about $4.83 per gallon on May 3, while Gulf Coast prices were slightly less. Yet a day later, when the trading community evaluated new EIA inventory statistics, FreightWaves saw “The Gulf Coast price rose about 2 cents per gallon, while the New York harbor price climbed anywhere from 13.9 cents to 16.4 cents per gallon.” This data revealed a 60 to 70 cents per barrel spread between the Gulf Coast and New York when average differences are measured in singular cents.
Federal Maritime Commission Asked To Oversee Ocean Terminal Fees
As supply chain capacity in ocean freight continues to be a hot topic, one shipper advisory group asked the Federal Maritime Commission (FMC) to increase its authority over demurrage and terminal dwell fees. Supply Chain Dive reported that the advisory group suggested, “The spirit of the FMC’s oversight should be founded at the Bill of Lading level through to the final destination defined by the shipment parties.”
Postmaster Expects Long-Term USPS Price Increases
Those actively shipping with USPS have likely already felt the impacts of its escalating price hikes. Postmaster General Louis DeJoy says the current and future price hikes are part of the USPS 10-year reform plan to promote corporate financial stability. The Federal News Network wrote that “USPS package revenue increased by $98 million, a 1.3% increase, despite delivering 94 million fewer packages — a 5% decrease compared to the same period last year. Package volume remains higher than pre-pandemic levels.”
Solidify Business Resiliency By Partnering with Business Logistic Experts at Intelligent Audit
While much of this week’s market news will affect the parcel industry, small parcel auditing software is not the solution for everyone. Top-quality, actionable analytics can guide business makers to be proactively and retroactively prepared for any news that might hit their inbox Monday morning. Start a conversation with Intelligent Audit today to learn what a business logistics expert can add to your business.